Guide to Being an Awesome Bridesmaid

A wedding is never deemed complete without a wedding entourage. Bridesmaids have been part of the tradition of weddings. Not much is known about its origins but perhaps it was borne out of the need to have witnesses during the ceremony. The Bible cites that in the story of Jacob his two wives Leah and Rachel both came with their own maids during the wedding.  Although, they were handmaidens or servants and neither friends nor relatives of the bride and groom. In Roman times, bridesmaids were dressed exactly like the bride. This is said to confuse the evil spirits who want to cause havoc to the happy couple. Also, it is done to ward off vengeful suitors or thugs who want to hurt the bride or steal her dowry. It was not until the wedding of Queen Victoria when bridesmaids began wearing white dresses and short veils to set them a bit apart from the bride.

So what exactly should you expect if you were asked by a friend or a relative to be a bridesmaid at her wedding? Let’s have a look at what is expected of the modern bridesmaid:

The To-Go-to-Girl. The bridesmaid helps the bride accomplish things in her wedding checklist. This includes important stuff like picking the wedding dress and scouting for venue for the pre-wedding photoshoot, the engagement party, the wedding ceremony and reception. It may also involve nitty gritty details that could mean the whole world between an awesome wedding and a memorable one. This may involve stuff like, choosing decorations and favors, helping the bride and the groom with the bridal registry, taking care of wedding invites and finalizing the seating arrangement. 

The party planner. Although it is not mandatory, the bridesmaid together with the Maid of Honor do the honors of throwing a Bachelorette party and the bridal shower for the bride. It’s a chance for the girls to have some clean fun before their favorite gal becomes the Mrs. Likewise, the bridesmaid may help out during the rehearsal dinner.

Unwavering Presence and Full Support. The bridesmaid is expected to be present in all of the pre-wedding and wedding day activities. This includes the bridal shower, bachelorette party, bridesmaids’ lunch, rehearsal and rehearsal dinner. And of course, to be with the bride to help her get through her wedding jitters and look her best on her wedding day. Offer the bride some food or water and keep her at ease while waiting for the ceremony to start.

Pitch in on the Cost. Weddings entail cost. And while the bulk of the expenses are to be paid by the couple and their families, the bridesmaids are expected to pay for their dresses (which they get to keep, of course), shoes and travel (if the wedding is happening out-of-town). The bridesmaid, along with the maid of honor, may also chip in for a group wedding or shower gift for the bride. Depending on the couple’s budget, bridesmaids may be asked to pay for hair, make-up, manicure and pedicure during the wedding.

Say Something Nice. While the task of honoring the newlyweds may fall on the maid of honor and the best man, it pays to be ready with an anecdote or two which you could share along with your well wishes for the newlywed couple.

Look Awesome. Being a bridesmaid is a reason to doll up and really look the part. To prepare for the special day, the bridesmaids can organize a bridal shower on a spa to relax and get a mani/pedi. So that during the wedding, they can all feel refreshed and relieved of the stresses of planning the wedding.

Have Fun. The bridesmaid must remember that the wedding is an occasion to celebrate and she is not exempted from having fun. She is expected to mingle with the guests and hit the dance floor along with the rest when the music kicks in. The bridesmaid should also participate in all the wedding day activities including the catching of the bouquet. 

Take Pictures. While the couple could opt to hire the services of a photographer, the bridesmaids can take pictures and chronicle the behind the scenes preparations leading to the wedding up to the events that will unfold after the celebration. This will make a great backstory to a great occasion.

Lots of Love

Photo credits: 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9